Everton shoots past Wolves in thriller

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Richarlison scored a pair of goals as Everton overcame a pair of Wolves equalizers in a 3-2 win at Goodison Park on Sunday.

[ MORE: Watch full PL match replays ]

Alex Iwobi scored Everton’s other goal in a game which saw three goals in the first 12 minutes. Romain Saiss and Raul Jimenez scored for Wolves, who fall to 3D-1L on the season.

Everton climbs into fifth, with seven points.


Four things we learned

1. Inspired Richarlison special — Make it three goals in four days for the Brazilian, who netted in a midweek win over Lincoln City. Scoring against Wolves is a bit more difficult, and Richarlison did it in style. His second, a powerful well-timed header, shows the elite caliber of his attributes. He now has five goals in two Augusts with the Toffees.

2. Everton breached, but pleased — Yes, the Toffees can allow goals at home. Multiple! But credit to Marco Silva‘s men for twice rebounding from equalizers in quick fire fashion. Now the Toffees can enter the break with a look at the Top Six spot they crave, albeit far from the 12 of 12 points they envisioned from a straight-forward start to the season.

3. Brave Raul’s status in question for USMNT — Mexican star striker Raul Jimenez put it all on the line in scoring Wolves’ equalizer, taking a boot to the face after heading his second half goal. The 28-year-old has eight goals in 10 matches this season.

4. Defending stars struggle — Willy Boly might’ve had an assist, but he was bad at the back and took a silly stoppage time yellow card to earn a red and suspension; Lucas Digne has been electric for Everton but had a day to forget, turned by Traore on Wolves’ first goal and lucky to escape punishment for his wayward clearing attempt that ended Jimenez’s day… on a play that resulted in a goal anyway.

Man of the Match: Richarlison — On his day, there are few if any better big wingers in the world.


Richarlison’s goal came inside of five minutes, as Rui Patricio panicked after Conor Coady waved him near and then passed it inside the six.

The ball came free to the Brazilian, who bounded a shot into the top of the goal.

The didn’t last long, with Adama Traore turning Lucas Digne and sending the ball through the six for a Saiss tap-in.

[ VIDEO: Premier League highlights ]

Sigurdssson and Iwobi restored the hosts’ lead in the 12th minute, the Icelandic playmaker hitting a pinpoint cross and the Nigerian goal scorer rising to plant an ideal header in the back of the net.

Moise Kean worked his way into the dialogue and nearly won a penalty were it not for an immaculately-timed tackle from Ryan Bennett.

Jimenez tied the game but lost his place in it when he headed a Willy Boly flick home just before the boot of Lucas Digne smashed him in the face.

Boly went from joy to anguish within moments, as Richarlison climbed over his French marker to restore Everton’s advantage.

Richarlison forced an incredible save out of Rui Patricio moments later, and the Portuguese backstop did well to slap a Yerry Mina header away in the 87th minute.

Forster stars as 10-man Celtic beat Rangers, claim 10th-straight trophy

Photo by Jeff Holmes/PA Images via Getty Images
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At some point, Rangers supporters will be forgiven for thinking Celtic doesn’t have all the luck in Scotland.

The Bhoys, second best for most of the day, scored a 60th minute goal and then overcame a red card three minutes later to claim their 10th successive piece of Scottish silverware with a 1-0 win the Scottish League Cup.

[ MORE: Premier League schedule ]

Celtic’s Chris Jullien prodded home a free kick before 18-year-old Jeremie Frimpong was sent off, and Rangers had already controlled the proceedings before seeing a 16-5 edge in shot attempts at the final whistle.

Goalkeeper Fraser Forster, the former Saints and Newcastle man, was outstanding in the win, even stopping an Alfredo Morelos penalty as the Rangers star failed to deliver.

From the BBC:

“It was just one of them days, it went my way today. I’m buzzing. There’s been days when it’s not gone my way, today it has. I can’t say how much it means to me. I didn’t really think about the penalty to be honest. I picked the way it went. I’ll take it.

“That’s why I came back; to play in games like this, to win silverware, to play European football.”

Rodgers: “Historic day” as Leicester City extends win streak

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Of course it’s early, but it looks like Leicester City is the Premier League’s lone bright hope of challenging Liverpool for the title.

And yeah, that’s a big deal, even after the Foxes claimed the most inexplicable title in top flight history just four seasons ago.

[ RECAP: Villa 1-4 Leicester City ]

But the Foxes remain leery about embracing their title credentials, even after setting a club record by winning their eight-straight via a 4-1 victory over Aston Villa at Villa Park on Sunday.

“I thought they were amazing,” said Brendan Rodgers. “It is a historical day for the club and the performance warranted that. It really does mean something special, it puts the team in the history books of Leicester City.”

Okay, but… just a little bit about the title fight, Brendan? No?

Perhaps goal scoring defender Jonny Evans would take the bait.

“We are up there and it shows we are playing well. Our performance was good, against one of the best Villa teams I faced in years. It shows we are capable of coming away and getting results. It is nice people are talking about us, we’re enjoying it and there’s great spirit in the club.”

Leicester is eight points back of first, the only team within 10 points of Liverpool. Man City is 14 back and Chelsea 17.

The Foxes host Norwich City before its next stretch of proving ground arrives via a League Cup quarterfinal at Everton prefaces league matches versus Man City and Liverpool.

Scrappy Sheffield United comes back to win again

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George Baldock had a goal and an assist as Sheffield United came back to beat poor Norwich City at Carrow Road on Sunday.

[ MORE: Watch full PL match replays ]

Enda Stevens also scored for the Blades, who got back in the win column after a loss to Newcastle at midweek. United is eighth, the top of three teams on 22 points.

Alex Tettey scored Norwich’s lone goal, the Canaries locked in 19th and four points back of safety.


Three things we learned

1. Baldock’s banner day: The Blades dangerous right back loves to whip in a cross, and it’s no surprise he got his assist that way. He’s been quite lively around the box this year, and his turn and fire to make it 2-1 was a fitting finish given the 26-year-old’s day.

2. Basham gets VAR reprieve: Sometimes it’s not black and white, and you go to VAR, and VAR decides the shades of gray. Chris Basham was sent off for a vicious tackle on Kenny McLean, but the Sheffield United man saw VAR decide it wasn’t quite so dastardly and Blades continued with 10 men. A tough one if you’re a Norwich supporter.

3. Buendia stays bright: Norwich playmaker Emiliano Buendia is keeping the Canaries in games, the proverbial don’t write it, don’t write it, don’t write it canary in a coal mine. Five more key passes for Buendia to accompany more fine dribbling and a surprisingly good battle for a player as skillful as the 22-year-old Argentine.

Man of the Match: Baldock.


The Canaries went in front through Tettey inside a half-hour of kickoff, a corner dealt with poorly from the Blades that the Norwegian struck well for 1-0.

Norwich was good money for its halftime lead, with an 8-4 edge in shots, 53 percent of the ball, and six corners to the Blades’ zero.

[ MORE: Premier League stats ] 

The Blades leveled things through Stevens, who headed in a Baldock cross before the assister became the scorer. The goal was no small ask, Baldock navigating the 18 to get off his shot.

Vardy, Iheanacho power 4-star Foxes past Villa

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Kelechi Iheanacho again collected a goal and an assist and Jamie Vardy scored twice as Leicester City punished Aston Villa in an entertaining 4-1 at Villa Park on Sunday.

[ MORE: Watch full PL match replays ]

Jonny Evans also scored for the Foxes, who maintain their place eight points behind leaders Liverpool.

Jack Grealish scored for Aston Villa, which stays ahead of 18th place on Southampton on goal differential.

Leicester City hosts Liverpool on Boxing Day, a date to circle on the calendar.


Three things we learned

1. Iheanacho emergence a new wrinkle: Nigerian striker Kelechi Iheanacho was always lurking as a possible star during his time at Man City, but couldn’t break through and transferred to the King Power Stadium. Life hadn’t been easy at his new home, but a goal and an assist in consecutive Premier League fixtures can make a difference as Leicester hopes to challenge Liverpool. Resting Jamie Vardy on occasion without a big drop-off would be a potentially monumental development.

2. Vardy’s party a record bash: The 15th and 16th goals of Vardy’s PL run put him on pace for 38. That would be six better than Mohamed Salah‘s 38-game record and four better than the 42-game mark shared by Alan Shearer and Andy Cole. Even when he makes mistakes, he finishes.

3. Hobbled Mings a big worry: Villa star center back Tyrone Mings pulled up with an injury but attempted to fight through it. Full credit to him, as he’s been the easy star of the newly-promoted side’s start to life in the Premier League, but an absence or step back from the block and clearance machine will be a major blow to Dean Smith‘s side.

Man of the Match: It’s between Vardy and Iheanacho — James Maddison was also good — and we’ll choose Vardy because we gave it to Iheanacho at midweek.


Kelechi Iheanacho slipped Vardy through on goal, and the Foxes striker nearly blew his chance despite dribbling the keeper.

Ezri Konsa would’ve liked to challenge Vardy following the unusual mis-touch, but the defender was felled by his own sliding keeper.

[ MORE: Premier League stats ] 

After Anwar El Ghazi just missed a promising bid to equalize, Villa’s Bjorn Engels slid to break up a Vardy pass to a wide open Iheanacho.

The Nigerian got his goal in the 41st, a James Maddison cross deflected goal ward and off his leg for 2-0.

Grealish bounced a shot through traffic and inside the far post after Vardy couldn’t clear a corner kick.

Leicester needed less than four second half minutes to restore its two-goal advantage, the unmarked Evans perfectly placing a back post header across goal off a corner kick.